EXCLUSIVE: Visceral Action- A Conversation with CRANK, GAMER & PANAMA Director Mark Neveldine!
By: John M Jerva
In the realm of action movie cinema, there are a few filmmakers that I have wanted to speak to ever since I started my website. One of these influential cinema mainstays was Mark Neveldine who co-directed with Brian Talylor the visceral action flicks Crank and Crank 2: High Voltage with Jason Statham as well as Gamer with Gerard Butler. Neveldine has a distinct signature when it comes to making high-octane films and his latest is no exception.
Neveldine is back with the powder keg political action-thriller Panama which sees him directing two of action’s most applicable actors in Cole Hauser and the one and only Mel Gibson. Ripped from the 80’s headlines when America was getting involved in the Panama situation, Hauser stars as a former Marine who must brave the volatile elements of an unstable government to help broker an arms deal that will be influential in what is coming.
In this exclusive interview, Neveldine talks about the new movie, working with Hauser and Gibson as well as shooting the action. We also dive into Crank and Gamer and get a behind the scenes look of Mark himself. Enjoy!
Hi Mark. First of all, thank you for answering my questions. I’m a real fan and it’s an honor to chat. First of all, talk about the path that led you into filmmaking. Was it a career you always wanted to do?
2) You have a unique visual style to the films you make. Tell us how it came about and how you approach each film you do.
3) If it’s ok, I’d love to talk about some previous movies too as they are favorites of mine and the stars that are in them: The Crank movies with Jason Statham are truly fun and over the top and they set a different trend for action films going forward. Tell us how they came about.
4) Gamer is my number one favorite Gerard Butler film. It’s so original and different in its execution. How did that concept happen and talk about Butler as a leading man?
5) I hope I get to talk to you about it a little more in the future. OK, your new film is Panama, and it comes from real events. How did you get involved with this project? I believe at one time it had a different Director and Frank Grillo and Morgan Freeman were attached to it. How was that evolution?
6) You got to have not one, but two great leading men headline the film in Cole Hauser and the one and only Mel Gibson. Both favorites of mine. Talk about each star and what they brought to the table.
7) Your movies have a real visceral feel to the action sequences. How do you approach set pieces in your films and what sources influence you in doing the physical and high-octane stuff?
8) Panama is a political thriller also punctuated with action. Talk about how the action compliments the heavy drama on display and specifically how it was tailor made for Cole.
9) There is a picture of you on the IMDb where you are running behind Jason Statham with a handheld. I love that picture and could you talk about it happening and give us a behind the scenes of it.
10) At this stage in your career, what type of projects still interest you from a filmmaking standpoint. Is there a certain type of movie you would still like to make?
11) In terms of the audience, what do you want them to take away from when they watch Panama.
12) Lastly, are there any future projects we can hear about?
Thank you so much again for answering my questions. This was a fun interview to do with you. Best of luck in the future and I’m waiting to hear more on the Crank Cinematic Universe!
Panama Hits Select Cinemas, Digital Platforms and VOD this Friday from Saban Films!
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John M Jerva is the owner and editor-in-chief of Action-Flix.com. He likes movies that explode, shoot, kick and punch and most importantly, he likes movies that do all the above!
View all posts by John M Jerva